Amazone branches into hoes with debut Schmotzer Venterra 2K

Amazone is among a ruck of big-name cultivator manufacturers to branch into the world of inter-row mechanical weeders off the back of strengthening anti-chemistry sentiment.

The first fruits of its 2019 acquisition of German specialist Schmotzer were on show at Cereals, in the shape of 6m, 12-row Venterra 2K.

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Although the soil-working components are Schmotzer’s own, Amazone claims to have improved both the hydraulics and frame design – the latter now lighter and stronger to handle heavier workloads that, on some German farms, have topped 1,000ha annually.

The fanciest Venterra models have a pivoting linkage to provide a degree of side shifting, which is paired with the same wing-mounted Claas Horus camera system as used by the likes of Horsch and Einbock.

Weed roots are sliced by flat Rapido “A” shares, with each row running on its own parallel linkage and depth primarily governed by the position of individual front support wheels.

Generous clearance means the Venterra will work in crops up to 50cm tall, and top speed is 15kph, provided ground conditions allow and excess soil movement is avoided.

Options at the back include finger weeders that can extract weeds from within the crop row.

Price for a top-spec 12-row Venterra with shifting frame, camera guidance, row protectors and finger weeders is £100,000. This can be paired with Amazone’s FT 1502 front tank to simultaneously apply liquid fertiliser or band spray herbicides between the rows.

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